Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Still obsessed with food

Not too long ago, I did a post on Canadian Bacon. I found out several things from the comments to that post. Mainly, Canadians don't know what the hell it is. Some Canadians thought Canadian Bacon exists only in the American imagination.

But, at the same time, the conversation turned to bacon in general. The concensus was that American bacon was worst of all, and British bacon was the best stuff on the planet. This from the British of course, most of whom have never tasted American bacon.

American bacon is very fatty and is an acquired taste for foreigners. It is smoked. Hickory smoked is the most common, followed by maple.

British bacon is much leaner, obviously cut from a different part of the pig. Canadian bacon (yes, there really is such a thing) is more like ham in my opinion - not really bacon at all. But that is what they call it.

At the top of this post is a picture of what British bacon looks like, for those of us who have never seen it. As you can readily see, it is much, much leaner than American bacon. I don't know if it is smoked or not. Probably is. Couldn't find that out before I got bored of  Googling this morning. I'm sure the Brits will tell us if it is, as long as we listen to their stories of how they once had American bacon and it was so bad-tasting they had to throw it away.

Just from looking at the picture on top, they may be right.


  1. British bacon is only less fatty if you buy back bacon. Streaky bacon is what you have in the picture and that can be fatty indeed. There is a lot of discussion about whether British bacon is the same as it used to be, so much of the cheap stuff is pumped up with water and additives, all of which leaks out in the cooking as a vile pink liquid. But you should have tasted my home-made bacon :) Britsh bacon can be smoked too.

    If we're going to split hairs, and you know I am, the picture at the top is of bangers. The second picture is back bacon.

  2. Nobody calls that Canadian bacon except Americans! We call it Peameal bacon - yes, I acknowledge it exists but you are calling it the wrong name. STOP CALLING IT THAT!

  3. I don't know whether it is common, but while I was in Toronto they served streaky bacon but very, very crispy.. not certain how they managed it but it was nice if a little different..

    The one thing I had trouble with is their bread pudding.. ours is a sweet dessert, their's seemed to be a savoury egg and bread concoction... can't say I enjoyed trying it but if you don't you never know whether you would or not..

    Still have Poutine(sp?) to try at some point in the future..

  4. See what I mean, you just can't go calling that "Canadia" bacon, I suppose this is where I will have to enforce my made up "bouncer" role.

    As for bacon, I'm tongue-washed into thinking American bacon is grand, so there. Not my fault, really you can blame that on my parents, and grandparents, and great grandparents. Have fun with that one.

    Canadian Bacon/Peameal bacon isn't the same as the American bacon your right, doesn't even taste the same either. I don't see the bacon in Canadian bacon/Peameal bacon, just can't. It's not salty, it's not even crispy, just doesn't belong on anything but pizza, imo.

    An insult to Bacon lovers everywhere are the bacon they serve at restaurants, now that some raunchy stuff right there. Tastes like plastic and rubber with a side of bacon. Anyone using their judgment on bacon from America simply by what they get in restaurants needs to stop. They need to go and get some home cooked bacon, it's the best.

  5. I have some bacon in the fridge so will photograph it for you :)

    and then I will have to eat it, as this post has made me hungry!

  6. MMMMMMMMMMMMMMM! Bacon.... And snorks!
    Okay, snorks is an old Australianism for bangers, but somehow, in my family it caught on.
    Yep, I agree with a.
    British bacon is available in a great many varieties, smoked and unsmoked, you show some nice looking back there, as the british, and some extremely thin-cut streaky as the american.
    The watery additive stuff is commonly sold in plastic sealed packaging, in supermarkets. They're allowed so many percent of the weight to be water... so they inject the bacon with brine under pressure, and sell you salty water.
    The result?
    the bacon that you bought cheap shrinks and looks unappetising.
    The solution?
    go to a good butcher, who will have sides of traditionally cured meat,smoked and unsmoked, get it sliced to your preference, and....... Make a point of going back to praise it, or gripe about it.
    The big sheds don't care. A self-employed master-butcher does.
    I recommend Middlemiss' butchers, just off the market square in Otley, west Yorkshire.
    Their growlers can't be beat.
    (*growler = pork pie.)

    I've never had american bacon, but my brother has, in many different parts of the U.S. He complains it's usually served sliced microtome-thin, and flavourless.
    If I manage my planned visit to the U.S. I'll be sure to undertake a survey.

  7. a.-Split hairs? Worse than that, a. I spit the damn picture itself. The original was of a plate with bacon on one side and sausages on the other. But it was narrow and wide and wouldn't fit on the post without being to small to see. So I de-landscaped it.

    And while we are on the subject, why do you always call sausages bangers? I can't put my finger on it exactly, but that makes them seem somehow obscene to American ears.

    Come to think of it, the only time I have heard a Brit use the word sausage is when my friend Claire speaks about her frequent sausage fests. I am not quite sure what she is talking about, but it seems to really please her.

    But BANGERS??? Try not to use that word in front of an American, okay?

  8. Canucklehead, why would I want to call bacon (of any kind) "peameal". Is this another of your weird jokes? I am not THAT gullible anymore, my friend. Even Canadians wouldn't call anything "peameal". You just made that word up. And I am trying to be serious here.

    Sage, if it was in Toronto, I'm sure it was very good indeed. Here in the U.S. we call that kind of bacon "burned". But "crispy" is also a nice word. I'll bet the Canadians liked you a lot. As for bread pudding, not so much for me, thanks. And I will have to get the Canuck back for the other thing. I have noticed one thing about you Sage, you really seem to know your food. You have really added a lot to my food posts over the past few weeks. Truly. And I like reading your blog as well. Thanks for the comment.

  9. PS Sage, and I suspect you know this already, but I was just joking about "burned" bacon. :)

    Sorry. "Burnt."

  10. Chica. ChicaChicaChicaChicaChica.

    Hon, first of all, you can't bounce on BritishSpeak. You can only bounce in the pub, ok? But thank you for calling the spelling to my attention. I have corrected it. I wasn't going to, because it is hard to correct words embedded in a picture. But I did, and I want to make sure you give me some sort of credit for doing it.

    And you are right about Canadian bacon in general. Only you were much more polite than I. I usually just say, "Canadian bacon sucks the big one." That is why you have more friends than I do, incidentally. That, and the fact that you have boobs. So there's that, too.

    And I totally agree with you about American bacon. Buy some good stuff and cook it at home. Thanks for the comment. And I loved your video. :)

  11. Claire. Wow. What a coincidence that you chose today to comment. I know how busy you are, so there is no need for you to read through all the comments here.

    And thanks so much for the picture you sent. You are really a girl of your word. Only, ummmm, Claire? That was a chicken, sweetheart. Not bacon. A chicken and some rather green-looking cheese. But you meant well, and I appreciate it.

  12. Soubriquet, I am again amazed at depth of your knowledge. On many subjects. (And not a little entertained at the way in which you share that knowledge.) :)

    Snorks. Australian. Yeah, that sounds about right. Nice word. Better than some of the others my Aussie friends tend to use when they comment here. And, yes, one seldom will need a knife when one eats American bacon.

    Finally (as you probably have seen) I did a post today over at our companion blog, the BritishSpeak Pub, about meat pies. I have heard the term "pork pie" and I have heard the word "growler" (although seldom in a non-sexual way) but have never heard the two put together. Growler. Pork pie. I like that. Thanks. Anyone care to try and explain the origin of that nickname? Erm, of that soubriquet? (heh. I've just been GAGGING--note the Aussie word--to use that word in a sentence, ever since you started commenting.) :)

  13. Ok, great food one...

    I just watched David Beckham on Jimmey Kimmel Live and he spoke of meat pie with a gravy called liquor (made of eel). Please find out more, allegedly a treat from East London?

  14. p.s. while my family eats bacon, the only bacon I have had in too many years for most to remember is soy. Guess that wouldn't thrill many here.

  15. Hi Debbie. Ah yes. David Beckham. Mr. Posh Spice. Just in time for "footie". ( I didn't know what footie even was until last night, btw.) Did you know I once actually did a post on this blog about how Posh was teaching Tom Cruise British slang? I digress.

    Ummmm, meat pies with eel liquor?? How can I love you so much when you are so weird and different? I think not, Debbie. Unless someone volunteers. Otherwise, let's stick to wine and pool parties, luv.

    East London? Isn't that where those clever rhyming cockneys hang out? Are you sure "eel liquor gravy" wasn't cockney code for something really filthy? It's possible, Deb. Btw, did you know that soy turns men into women? Fact. Ask any doctor. DO let your sons eat real bacon. Real AMERICAN bacon.

    And Debbie? Don't be staying up so late again. K?

  16. "Snorkers, good oh". Well known quote from The Cruel Sea. Popular in our family too.

  17. @Debbie...

    the Pie and Mash with liquor is an East End staple (less now than before as it is quite expensive - and frankly doesn't taste very nice).. the liquor is liquidised peas and therefore is bright green - this is served with a meat pie and finely mashed potatoe.. starch on a plate.

    Not to be confused with jellied eels - another east end staple where eels are chopped up and cooked in stock and the natural gelatin in the bones turns it to jelly.. never tried it as far too snake like for me.

    Hope this helps.


  18. I try not to eat bacon here in the states, it really just isn't good - sorry folks.

    You just can't beat a good bacon butty, with some HP Sauce. Now, i am really hungry, but it doesn't do me any good, I won't be able to satisfy that craving till I am back in the UK in August.

    (why am I unable to post comments via my Blogger ID on your blog. I don't have problems any where else)

  19. Caroline, I don't know. Puzzled. I know you have had this problem before. But (as you can see) others don't seem to be having the same problem. Did you try it with Lolly's ID? Or are you using the same one for her?
    Of course, you know as much or more about computers than I, so I am not the one to ask I guess. I have checked the BS settings on the blog and all seem ok. Don't let that stop you. Anonymous is ok if you have to. (I know what you look like. :)

  20. well now it works... seems I had a dodgy link... but now its all better :)

  21. Good. And I will try to come up with another post that will interest you enough to comment on. :)

  22. Although the following comment was made to a different post, adding to my word collection, I feel it needs to be dragged kicking and screaming out here in the sunlight so you folks from the North of England might have a chance to respond. Not that I would ever try and start a fight, you understand. I am guessing the commentor is from the SW of England. Just a guess.

    missbliss said...
    "grockle" - used mainly in the South West of England (where there is a lot of coast and countryside so people come for their holidays) to describe a tourist from the rest of the UK.

    i.e. "ugh, look at those grockles in that grockle shop*"

    * a grockle shop sells cheap plastic tat, like souvenir magnets and sticks of rock to the gullible grockles

    JUNE 11, 2008 12:49 PM

  23. Cornwall and Devon suffer from grockles and emmits. Emmits, in curnow, the Cornish language, are ants. Also tourists, who swarm in the same manner.
    Here in the northerly bits wealso have swarms of tourists, York in particular being a tourist magnet, but we have no such special name for them. A pity, that.
    Pork Pies/Growlers, I don't know for sure where the name comes from, my grandfather referred to pork pies as growlers, the name seems to be confined to yorkshire, and more south/west yorkshire than the rest of the county.
    Cockney slang. Pork-pie, porkie, = lie. As in "you're telling a porkie".
    Real Yorkshire Pork Pie as wedding cake: http://tinyurl.com/kwnam
    Bangers. There! I said it again. In England, sausages are bangers. As in Bangers and mash. We're not sure what you colonials think bangers are.
    "Snorkers! Good-oh! " I'm impressed, A, that you know the reference, words from Nicholas Montserrat's book "The Cruel Sea". And the film of the same name.
    First mate Bennett says it.

    As for my obfuscatory appelation, I'm also to be found elsewhere as Bogus Cognomen. My mother calls me David. Whatever disguise I wear.

  24. Dear Mr Soubriquet, did you once invent the Edible Tyre? Please, Max, avert your eyes, for here comes yet another link to a porn site. I know you'll let it pass, just for me.

    [PS., Max, the man's a nutter!]

  25. My dear traveling Sheila: Strangely, he is making perfect sense to me today. Not that you don't think I am a nutter as well, being an American and all. I rather like that new word, btw, even though it doesn't qualify for the book, it's meaning being obvious.

    Plus, I am immensely entertained by the man's presentation - I admit so much so that I often lose contact with his actual content.

    Sheila, my dear, you DID provide me one usable word. As usual, it was inadvertent - a word you probably assume the whole world uses. Actually, they are called "dumpsters." Just for the record. what you call them is really what American children do on sidewalks.

    But then, you don't even have sidewalks. This is giving me a headache. Alcohol, please. I shall be over at the pub.

  26. Soubriquet, your appellation is hardly obfuscatory. ( I think we've got your number - as we Americans would say.) Even illuminative, actually, in an odd sort of way. And I shall call you David, then, snorkers notwithstanding, and no matter who the hell this first mate was.

  27. That's scary. I mean, I am a nutter, but how did she know about the edible tyre debacle?
    Does this mean my anonymity is slipping?
    Oh dear.
    Sheila?- Are you secretly one of the skip-sisters?

    Skips. Yes, we call them that. In France they are multibennes. In German it is often call “der Container” (or “Müllcontainer” Müll=garbage) spain: El “Contenedor”, Denmark:- container, or skip. What they're called elsewhere I have no idea.
    Skips are NOT dumpsters, they are quite different but they perform a similar function. Unlike Dempster's dumpster, skips can be nested inside each other for storage and transport, most skips have no lid..
    Dumpsters were invented and named by George Roby Dempster, who in his earlier days drove railway (railroad) engines (locomotives), signed on at sea at the age of sixteen as an oiler, inadvertently admitted his real age and got shipped home, drove steam shovels on the panama canal project...
    Read his autobiography, I recommend it.
    We don't have sidewalks though we do have zebra crossings. We can walk sideways, though.



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